Chris Wilder has described Chris Basham as an ideal Sheffield United player after insisting the Blades are “fortunate” to have the versatile star in their ranks.
Basham - who will, barring unforseen circumstances, make his 200th league appearance for the Blades this season after joining from Blackpool in July 2014 - is the longest-serving member of United's current squad and scored his latest goal for Wilder’s side on Saturday, in victory over Preston North End at Bramall Lane.
Basham dedicated the goal to his son, Luke, who was celebrating his fourth birthday and, in the build-up to the game, spoke about his aims for United this season and how much it would mean to him to eclipse the appearance record of Chris Morgan, who he described as a “club legend”.
And, ahead of this weekend's trip to Millwall, Wilder said of Basham’s header: “It was a popular goal, because he’s a popular player – amongst the supporters but also amongst the staff and players.
“He ticks all the boxes as to what being a Sheffield United player is all about, and we're fortunate and lucky to have him.
“He plays a number of positions and it’s never a problem or an issue – he just goes about his work.
“We shifted him three or four times against Preston and he just got on with it. And you saw the reaction of the players when he scored, which spoke volumes about what a popular boy he is in the changing room.”
Basham, meanwhile, admits he is “very comfortable” with his contract situation at Bramall Lane after admitting he sees himself as a big player for the Blades.
The defender is one of a number of players whose contracts expire at the end of the current campaign, although discussions aimed at extening those deals are ongoing.
And Basham, who is expected to make his latest appearance for Wilder’s men at The Den on Saturday, revealed: “The manager has spoken to me, and I’m very comfortable with the situation.
“I want to get it done, but sometimes things take time in football. As I say, I’m comfortable with it and I’m sure it’ll get done soon enough.
“I class myself as a big player for this football club, so it’ll come when it comes.”
Billy Sharp and Paul Coutts are also amongst the senior players who are in the final year of their contracts at Bramall Lane.